RCPCH Ambassador

Our volunteer RCPCH member Ambassadors across England advocate locally for children, young people and the workforce that serves them. Find out more about this role and how you can apply.
RCPCH Ambassadors | Local advocates for children's health

Why RCPCH Ambassadors?

The Interim NHS People Plan (June 2019) set out an initial framework for the devolution of service, workforce and financial planning responsibilities to Integrated Care System (ICS) and Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP) level.

It is crucial that the needs of children and young people (CYP) are considered in every STP/ICS in England; this is essential to deliver the commitments to CYP set out in the NHS Long Term Plan and Implementation Framework, and to improve the health of CYP across England.

The paediatric and wider child health workforce must also be advocated for within STPs/ICSs, to ensure that adequately resourced child health professionals are able to provide the highest quality care to children and young people. Local Workforce Action Boards (LWABs) support the activity of STPs/ICSs around workforce, and as such are key stakeholders in local workforce planning. 

As an RCPCH Ambassador, your expertise, communication skills and passion for improving outcomes will have a real impact. You will engage with your local ICS, STP or LWAB on behalf of children, young people and the workforce with support from the RCPCH and the wider RCPCH Ambassador network.

What do RCPCH Ambassadors do?

  • Advocate for the integration and improvement of local services in ways that benefit children and young people, as described in the NHS Implementation Framework
  • Advocate for the local paediatric workforce and the broader child health workforce
  • Disseminate workforce knowledge held by the RCPCH to LWABs and ICSs

What qualities are you seeking in RCPCH Ambassadors?

  • Passionate about creating impact in their local area for the benefit of children, young people and the workforce that serves them
  • An RCPCH member of one of the following types: Junior; Associate; Ordinary (by exam or election); Fellow (by registration or election); Senior Fellow, Senior Member, Retired Associates
  • An interest in child health policy
  • Strong communication skills, with an ability to present information in a fluent and persuasive manner

How will my success an an RCPCH Ambassador be measured?

The outcomes of this important work are hard to quantify, especially in the short term. The following have been identified as indicators of success that can be measured:

  • Children and young people are referred to in the vision, or mission statement, of the ICS.
  • The STP/ICS refers to RCPCH workforce, service standards and position statements and aims to meet these in its provision of care to children and young people.
  • The gap between the workforce in the area and the workforce required by the local population is defined. 
  • Children and young people are informed, consulted, involved and actively shape service policy and practice at ICS/STP/LWAB level. Ambassadors represent and advocate for their needs in other forums that are inaccessible to children and young people.  This outcome accords with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and the NHS Constitution (2013).

How do I apply?

We in the process of changing the way we advertise Ambassador roles. If you are interested in becoming an Ambassador please email ambassadors@rcpch.ac.uk.

What support can I expect from RCPCH?

The College is hugely grateful to its RCPCH Ambassadors for volunteering their valuable time. As such, the College is committed to supporting RCPCH Ambassadors in their role both at the initial stage of recruitment and on an ongoing basis through the following materials and resources:

  • An Ambassador handbook describing NHS system design, examples of best-practice working at the local level within STPs/ICSs and a guide to effective advocacy
  • A workforce profile of the Ambassador's area according to the most recent RCPCH census data, updated biennially according to the latest census findings
  • A quarterly opportunity for structured reporting on progress and challenges, with guidance then provided as appropriate
  • A yearly one-day event for Ambassadors to learn about policy developments, hone their advocacy skills and to meet other Ambassadors and stakeholders
  • Ongoing support from College officers and staff accessible via one single point of contact within the RCPCH

How long can I be an RCPCH Ambassador for?

The College is committed to supporting its volunteer RCPCH Ambassadors to the greatest extent possible, empowering them to achieve the utmost impact in their locality. RCPCH Ambassadors are welcome to remain within their role and part of the wider RCPCH Ambassadors network for as long as they wish, although a one-year length of service is anticipated initially to become established within their STP/ICS or LWAB.

The maturity of STPs/ICSs and their associated LWAB will vary across the country, as their work is dependent on strong local relationships and a uniting shared vision within their local context. The working schedule of STPs/ICSs and LWABs therefore varies between organisations.

From our and our members’ experiences of working within STPs/ICSs and LWABs, however, we anticipate that the workload for RCPCH Ambassadors will be eight hours per month including quarterly structured reporting to the RCPCH as previously mentioned.

More resources

Learn more about STPs and ICSs from NHS Providers

Learn more about LWABs from Health Education England